The third Sunday of Advent is known as Gaudete Sunday which means "rejoice" and is signified by the lighting of the pink candle on the Advent wreath. Its name is taken from the entrance antiphon of the Mass:
"Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice.
Indeed, the Lord is near."
Before realizing that the date of our Advent event had fallen on this day of celebration during the Advent season, the name "Rejoice!" was chosen for the evening. The Holy Spirit's influence isn't always so obvious, but you didn't need to be a biblical scholar to catch this one!
The goal of the event was to provide a time of joy and peace during the Advent season. We can so easily find ourselves overwhelmed and consumed with stress and busyness this time of year. We spend countless hours and dollars shopping, preparing, cooking, traveling and often forget the reason we are doing it all. We are preparing for Christ's coming, and this was an evening to leave all the stress behind and rejoice in the coming of our Lord and Savior.
I think we look forward to every time we get to play music together, whether its at rehearsal, liturgy, adoration or worship events, but something felt more exciting than usual for this event. The night before, we played music for the Jesus Across the Border Christmas event at Immaculate Conception Parish in Nashua, NH which consisted of a concert and Eucharistic Adoration. This was a beautiful celebration and we were looking forward to bringing the joy from this event back to Exeter the following day to share our excitement with St. Michael Parish. We had invited Billy Beaushesne, the director of Jesus Across the Border to be the witness speaker at our event and share his story. The collaboration between our band and Billy for these two events added to our excitement. We have been blessed to work with him and Jesus Across the Border over the past year or so and love being a part of their events and mission reaching the young adult community in our area. Additionally, we had the St. Thomas Aquinas chamber singers joining us as special musical guests for the evening. Their style and presence brought a festive feeling to the night in a unique way. Topping it all off was the addition of some new features to our setup (thanks again to Billy for bringing the lights!).
The stage was set for a great evening and we were thrilled with the turnout for the event. The choir was amazing and Billy gave a powerful witness. We appreciate the support and always pray that the experience we provide helps bring people closer to Christ especially during this time of preparation for Christmas. As we are now only a few days from the season of Christmas, we hope to bring the joy and hope from Advent into our lives through the celebration of birth of Jesus Christ!
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